Petition to remove UCPD officer receives more than 21,000 signatures

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Martin Flores/Facebook/Courtesy

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A petition to remove UCPD Officer Sean Aranas was created Saturday by campus student Vicky Zamarripa and has received more than 21,000 signatures as of press time.

The petition surfaced after Aranas was captured on video writing a citation for a hot dog street vendor and taking money out of the vendor’s wallet. Campus alumnus Martin Flores took these videos and posted them on Facebook to raise awareness about this interaction with Aranas. The post was shared more than 95,000 times and received more than 20,000 likes as of press time.

“We believe that our officers should focus on protecting our students and our community. And most importantly, we believe our officers should be respectful towards students and community members (and not single out people of color),” Zamarripa said in the petition. “Because S. Aranas #76 has failed to do so, we are asking for his immediate removal from UCPD.”

UCPD spokespeople did not respond to multiple requests for comment. Other allegations have also appeared across various Facebook posts and comments on the petition, describing Aranas’ behavior as unnecessarily aggressive towards students and people of color.

ASUC President Zaynab AbdulQadir-Morris wrote in a Facebook comment that she has personally witnessed officers targeting her friends and will bring up the issue with interim Vice Chancellor Stephen Sutton in a meeting with him this week. She will ask the ASUC Senate to pass a bill and take an official stance supporting the removal of Aranas, according to AbdulQadir-Morris.

Flores attended the Cal football game Saturday with his family and was only able to get the first name of the vendor, who said his name was Juan.  

After the game, Flores was ordering hot dogs from the street vendor when Aranas approached Juan and began to write up a citation for him not having a permit to sell food on the street. Flores said he saw other illicit activities, such as drinking alcohol on campus and scalping game tickets, happening in plain sight.

“They have a blind eye for some of the issues that could be addressed,” Flores said. “But why is it that this hot dog vendor was selectively identified?”

During the interaction with Aranas, Flores said Juan looked scared but was cooperative. Flores has started a GoFundMe for Juan, which has already raised more than $35,000.

“The only beautiful thing here is there is a lot of community support,” Flores said. “Juan will be located and will benefit from those funds … whether it’s getting a car, getting a permit, whatever is the applicable thing to address the issue.”

Malini Ramaiyer is an assistant news editor. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @malinisramaiyer.

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  • alrotundo

    Little boys with badges.

  • Richard Cranium Jr.

    The government can take your money for any reason or no reason. It’s then up to you to prove it’s legally yours, and how you legally obtained it. Especially anything over $10k…

  • Vero Duenas

    I can’t believe UC Berkeley is defending this crooked cop! So much for “prestigious” university! He needs to be fired! Damn coward!

  • SMH

    _ SO *THERE’S* YOUR GODDAMN “DUE PROCESS”…

    And this poor Latino push cart vendor gets *ALLL* his money summarily taken away *regardless* of what portion came from hotdogs and what portion *DIDN’T*!!

    Yeah, THAT’S THE **PIGS** IN ACTION.

    And you know that the people who can get away with drinking in public on campus and carousing in the streets when they do are *white* ‘kids’ — the guy, UC Berkeley alum Martin Flores, videoing and verbally protesting was just too polite to explicitly say so (not that I really care anymore about that than I do about the, at least, hardworking Latino immigrant hotdog vendor selling hotdogs for his family [the kind of Latino immigrants that Trump says are all “rapists, murderers & thieves”]).
    .
    (Remember a little white back on local TV, when some *PIG* took some isolated neighborhood Latino fresh fruit vendor’s fruit!?: took ALLL of the poor vendor’s fruit — to protect some Black or Brown working-class neighborhood from fresh fruit! And it was a *neegro* *PIG* — which shows you what the *PIGS* are as AN *INSTITUTION*, regardless of color or gender.)

    When the *PIGS* say, “To protect & serve”, they mean THE *STATE* & WHITE CORPORATE CAPITALISM!

    Meanwhile *STILL* not a single corporate BANKSTER has served a single day in jail, let alone prison, or had a single cent taken away from him in fines, or returned ill-gotten money or income, or even undeserved bonuses!

    • SMH

      _ Actually, if you’re not actually under arrest (which apparently the Latino guy wasn’t, since he wasn’t in handcuffs), the *PIGS* don’t have a right to take *anything* from you, or search *inside* your clothing, or demand that you give or show *anything* to them — without a warrant — unless the *PIGS* see something that is, or represents, a clear & imminent danger, or if the *PIGS* see something (like a brick/bag of cocaine or meth) in plain sight (or if there’s something like someone screaming from the trunk of you car ,or if there’s blood streaming out from a hole or crack under the trunk).

      Although, our Constitutional rights have been greatly eroded in some cases (except for *white* gunlovers and their guns): the Bill of Rights have been hollowed out or individually shrunken, or elsewise virtually eliminated in certain places (as just a few examples, U.S. airports, or if you’re overseas even in U.S.-allied countries, or what’s considered “privacy” or “searchable”) — like the “*administrative* confiscation” or “*administrative* detention” of your property (whether it’s your money, your car, your cell phone, your laptop, etc.).

      The *PIGS* obviously didn’t see the Latino immigrant’s money in plain sight because it was in his wallet(!!), and his wallet was probably in his pocket(!!) — but the *PIGS* intimidated &/or tricked the, after all, Latino immigrant into giving up his rights by getting him to just hand over his wallet while not even under arrest! And, of course, the *PIG* couldn’t account for what money was from the sale of hotdogs and what money wasn’t.

      THE *PIGS* LOVE TO TRICK, OR INTIMIDATE, OR EVEN PLAY “OFFICER FRIENDLY” AND CAJOLE OR BEGUILE, PEOPLE INTO GIVING UP THEIR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS — AND THE COURTS *WILL* BACK THIS UP:

      …THE COURTS (AND THE D.A.) WILL SAY, ‘SORRY, YOU STILL “VOLUNTARILY” GAVE UP YOUR RIGHTS’ — EVEN IF YOU CAN *PROVE* THAT THE *PIG(S)* INTIMIDATED, OR SCARED, OR TRICKED, OR EVEN OUTRIGHT *LIED* TO YOU TO GET YOU TO *DO* SO.

      SOMETIMES THE *PIGS* WILL EVEN TRY TO ‘BUMRUSH’ THEIR WAY INTO A SEARCH OR YOUR HOUSE OR CAR IF YOU LEAVE THE DOOR OPEN AND THEY JUST WALK RIGHT IN…:

      …THAT’S NOW *LEGAL* — UNLESS YOU *EXPLICITLY* SAY THOSE ‘MAGIC’ WORDS, “I DO NOT CONSENT TO YOU ENTERING MY HOUSE/CAR, AND TO A SEARCH OF MY PROPERTY, WITHOUT A WARRANT.” …IF YOU DON’T EXPLICITLY SAY THAT, AND *KNOW* TO SAY THAT, THEN YOU’VE VOLUNTEERED!

      BTW, THE *PIGS* LOVE TO TRY TO INTIMIDATE OR TRICK WOMEN OF *ANY* COLOR.

      * * TAKE A “KNOW YOUR RIGHTS” COURSE FROM “COPWATCH” OR SOME ETHNIC OR IMMIGRANT OR ACTIVIST COMMUNITY ORGANIZATION — ALTHOUGH EVEN THEY MAY NOT KNOW HOW TO COVER *EVERYTHING* THAT THEY *SHOULD*, BUT YOU’LL GET THE VERY BASICS — OR CONSULT AN ATTORNEY, ESPECIALLY A CRIMINAL LAW ATTORNEY. * *

      But, the *PIGS* have a long history of taking –*stealing*– people’s money — especially people of color and poor people — and letting those people *try* and get it back (a PURPOSELY *very* long and PURPOSELY often very complicated process, even if the *PIGS* illegally stole that person’s money in the first place)! If the witness’s (UCB alum Martin Flores’) camera wasn’t there recording the incident and posted / released so publicly, the *PIGS* would have probably just split the money between / among themselves! And to think how much of this stuff was going on — for *DECADES* — when white people thought that people of color were lying about such things — longgg before witnesses with cell phone video cameras could very occasionally or by happenstance expose it.

      Before cell phone cameras, the Latino vendor would have probably been *pro forma* contrived-arrested for “assault on a police officer” & “resisting arrest”, too — jJUST FOR ASKING [in Spanish] FOR HIS MONEY BACK, or for no reason at all! That’s what was probably automatically added to the original arrest charges of that Salt Lake City, Utah, nurse’s arrest when she refused to obey an *UNCONSTITUTIONAL* order — to draw an unconscious patient’s *blood*(!!), a patient who wasn’t even under arrest(!!) — by that Salt Lake City *PIG*! –With the other *PIGS* (male *&* female) just standing by and letting that happen!

      Just think what the original charges would have been if there were no cameras there…: the nurse might have gotten beaten bloody, or sustain-tased, and later gratuitously strip-searched for fun, or maybe even shot & killed (like that totally innocent woman in Minneapolis)!

      MOST WHITE PEOPLE DON’T EVER SEE / EXPERIENCE THIS SIDE OF THE *PIGS*…: MOST WHITE PEOPLE JUST SEE THE TV & MOVIE & “OFFICER FRIENDLY” SIDE OF THE PIGS / HOGS — BUT OCCASIONALLY THIS ABUSE, BRUTALITY, OR EVEN ATROCITY, NOW EVEN COMES TO *WHITE* PEOPLE FROM THE PIGS.

      IN BLACK AND BROWN COMMUNITIES, THE *PIGS* HAVE BEEN OUTTA CONTROL — OR OTHERWISE HIGHLY RACIALLY SELECTIVE ABOUT *WHO* GETS TARGETED — SINCE THE END OF SLAVERY! — THIS, WHILE WHITE PEOPLE USUALLY *REALLY* HAVE TO DO SOMETHING BAD, OR *REALLY* EXCEED THE LIMITS, TO GET TARGETED.

      THERE’S A *REASON* THAT, ESPECIALLY, BUT NOT ONLY, BLACK AND BROWN PEOPLE HAD LONG CALLED THE *PIGS* THE *PIGS* (OR, AS SNOOP DOGG CALLS THEM, THE / THEM *HOGS*!).

  • Just Facts

    This was robbery with the use of a deadly weapon. Lethal force to stop the robbery was warranted. Find this criminal that is hiding behind a job title and punish him for 1) stealing, and perhaps more importantly for 2) contributing to the decay of the justice system.

  • TNT

    Let me get this straight, a police officer issues a citation to a guy for selling food without a permit and discontents want him removed from the force? A question that does arise is whether or not the officer removed money from the guy’s wallet? If so was this unlawful?

    • 19th-Century Radical

      People aren’t upset about the citation. They’re upset that the cop is a thief who stole money.

      • TNT

        They are assuming the cop is a thief who stole money. Innocent until proven guilty.

        • 19th-Century Radical

          He took the money on camera in violation of the law; he had no evidence that that money was from sales of hot dogs, and civil forfeiture is illegal in California. He’s a thief.

          • TNT

            If there is video footage then that can be used to prosecute him. My question is whether this alleged footage displays the officer engaging in criminal activity .Innocent until proven guilty. Hence, he isn’t even a suspect because as far as I know there are no charges against him.

          • 19th-Century Radical

            Alleged footage? It’s right there. Whether there’s a charge against him or not has no bearing on whether he’s suspected of a crime. He took money from the man’s wallet. If he took it as evidence, he’s an idiot, because it’s only evidence that the vender had money in his wallet (if it was in a cash box it would be a different story).

          • TNT

            Yes, alleged footage. I have yet to see unedited film footage that displays the chain of events before, during, and after the alleged incident. Anyways, there are people who look at that kind of stuff for a living. That is the job of experts. Has he been charged with a crime? It is pretty weird to call somebody a suspect or alleged X if they haven’t been charged. Even after it happens, the officer is innocent until proven guilty.

          • 19th-Century Radical

            You do not understand the words “alleged,” “footage,” or “suspect.” I suspect that’s the short list of what you don’t understand. The only thing you said that is true is your last sentence. It’s also irrelevant. He should be fired immediately.

          • TNT

            Has the police officer been charged with a crime? Have experts evaluated the video? The police officer is being accused by SJW internet lawyers of a crime (you even state that he should be fired). He hasn’t been fired to my knowledge. I wonder why?

          • 19th-Century Radical

            He hasn’t been fired because firing a cop for a crime against the public doesn’t happen very often. And again, “suspect” does not mean “charged.” On another point, you wrote this: “If the police officer gets charged with a crime then he isn’t innocent until proven otherwise.” I’m pretty sure you don’t mean what you wrote there. Typo?

          • TNT

            Thanks. It should have read “isn’t he”. If the video footage is out there then he should be investigated at the very least. I haven’t seen it but even if I did I am no criminal lawyer.

          • TNT

            Also, the concept of innocent until proven guilty is a hall mark of the American justice system. If the police officer gets charged with a crime then he isn’t innocent until proven otherwise. This is a truth that you wish wasn’t so for your ideological agenda.

    • Huggermuggering

      It is called evidence. That is why the money was taken. So everyone in here is ok with breaking the law? The law is to protect you from health issue he might have.

      • TNT

        There are experts that analyze evidence (real or imagined) and courts that determine a person’s guilt in criminal cases. It is unclear that the officers actions broke the law.

  • elchepe

    Ask yourself where this guy washes his hands. These unpermitted street vendors are a health hazard.

    • 19th-Century Radical

      Entirely beside the point. Learn to read.

  • laura

    Fake news manufactured by Flores. Who is going track the thousands $$$ he is amassing. Suckers! No cop is going to fired cause some dumb kids play McCarthy games.

  • Freakin awesome news about the crowd funding so Juan can get his permits and get back to working his stand. Good job to everyone who did that.

    I can understand the ticket, but what empowers the cops to take his cash out of his wallet? That’s insane.

    • James George

      That is all cops do is rob if you think about it, how often is there a real injured party with all the claims these thugs make?

  • Curtis Jones

    You are all a bunch of sniveling snowflakes. You get the crime you deserve and deserve more.

    • Harold A.

      Heaven forfend that we suffer the fate of being subjected to the heinous crime of hot dog vending.

    • denvermountainman

      Get a grip Curtis. There are two different issues here. You are absolutely right that the cop has the authority to shut own that cart and issue a citation. He could even impound the cart and the law supports him. The moment he took that mans wallet is when he crossed the line. Read up on civil asset forfeiture if you think this is justice.

    • Mess with my money and I’ll hurt you.

  • PhoenixM

    As per SB 443, the cop had no legal jurisdiction to seize that man’s assets, and could not legally have turned in the money to his superiors; he undoubtedly kept it for himself.

  • Tizzie Lish

    Fire this cop. Its one thing to stop the guy from selling hot dogs but seizing his money violates the 4th amendment. He’s not guilty of anything until proven so in a court of law. Shame on the cop. And why werent they, as Flores keeps saying in the video, out ticketing all the illegal drinking going on all over?

  • Chad Kuehne

    Trump pardon for officer to come soon.

    • RemoveTheVeil

      STFU you moron.

      • Esteban Pena

        It’s satire man, calm tf down

  • Sky Zowidi

    “UC Berkeley Police are supporting an officer(Sean Aranas) with a history of violence, and an allegation of sexual molestation”.
    Please read https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2010/06/13/18650576.php

    There is also a petition to have him removed http://www.thepetitionsite.com/992/821/972/remove-s.-aranas-76-from-university-of-california-police-department/

  • Rosa Diaz

    If this cop does not get removed or at least penalized for his actions, There will be a riot. Trust Me, I will gladly start it. I am tired of people in authority roles, taking advantage of people ! no race no color mentioned just people in general! have some morals!

    • jim hoch

      Better hurry, there is another riot starting later in the week.

    • Jimbo23

      Thanks! Yeah I came here looking for you know… the petition…

    • Oscar Lisbey

      Exactly! Thank you!

    • Martha Castellon Canto

      Thank you!

    • V Santa Cruz

      Thank you!

    • Cheryl Brown Sallee

      thank-you

  • Jack Spencer

    He did not have a right to take money out of someones personal wallet unless he witnessed it being put there as proceeds from unlawful activity. Otherwise the police have a right to issues citations for such activity.

  • 1776

    Prosecutorial discretion, you can’t enforce every law at all times, and even though I might somewhat disagree with a law such as this, the Police Officer did nothing wrong. Maybe you should write the state legislature to change the law to allow street vendors such as this.

    • Areyoukidding

      Yeah, he does have prosecutorial discretion, and could have easily just ticketed the man and not been so unwontedly cruel as you take his money under the bs rule of “civil forfeiture”, which is essentially used as a mechanism of treating people as guilty until proven innocent.

    • PhoenixM

      The law in California was already changed a year ago; maybe YOU should look it up before spouting garbage you know nothing about.

      http://www.drugpolicy.org/news/2016/09/california-governor-brown-signs-bill-protecting-californians-civil-asset-forfeiture-abu

      • david

        It’s painfully obvious you misread the story you linked to.